CROSSING Kedrah House Stud’s Well Chosen, a son of Sadler’s Wells (Northern Dancer) with the unraced Alderbrook (Ardross) mare Knockamullen Girl has proven to be very potent indeed.
The 24-year-old stallion is the sire of Carefully Selected, winner at the age of 11 of the Grade A Goffs Thyestes Chase at Gowran Park on Thursday.
The Joe Lalor-bred was previously winner of the Grade 3 Killiney Novice Chase at Punchestown and the Grade 3 Naas Novice Chase, and he has been placed three times at Grade 1 level, in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper at Cheltenham, the Champion INH Flat Race at Punchestown, and in the War Of Attrition Novice Hurdle, also at the Punchestown Festival.
Bought as a store at the Tattersalls Ireland August Sale in 2015 by Katie Walsh’s Greenhills Farm, Carefully Selected raced in the colours of her brother-in-law Killian McCarthy between the flags. Runner-up on his debut at five at Oldtown, he made no mistake at the second time of asking, partnered by Katie to win at Monksgrange by 30 lengths.
We had to wait until almost the eve of turning six before we saw Carefully Selected again, and he won at the Leopardstown Christmas meeting with Patrick Mullins in the plate, now carrying the distinctive silks of Margaret Masterson. This was followed with a victory at Naas, and then it was on to Cheltenham. Patrick opted to partner Blackbow in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper, Danny Mullins got the leg up on Carefully Selected, while Paul Townend sat on Tornado Flyer.
Ironically, it was yet another Willie Mullins runner, the 25/1 shot Relegate, who denied Carefully Selected victory in one of the best renewals of the race. Would you believe it, but Katie Walsh was on the winner! Willie supplied four of the first five home, while his complete outsider was seventh. She started at 50/1, and was called Colreevy.
In the Grade 1 bumper at Punchestown, Tornado Flyer, Blackbow and Carefully Selected supplied the master of Closutton with a one, two, and three in the race. It was to be almost 11 months before we saw Carefully Selected again, winning a maiden hurdle at Limerick, and he was thrown in at the deep end next time out when he was a good third in the Grade 1 novice at Punchestown, behind two runners we have heard a great deal of since, Minella Indo and Allaho.
Chasing was next and Carefully Selected won his first three starts over the larger obstacles, but he was beaten when he unseated Patrick Mullins at the last in the National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham, for which he was a hot favourite. We then had no sighting of the gelding, still with few miles on the clock, for more than 1,000 days before he was back at Leopardstown just after Christmas, putting up a fine return effort, though finishing down the field. That run had him cherry-ripe for Gowran, and he delivered.
Carefully Selected is one of seven blacktype winners for his well-bred sire, who was just a minor winner himself. He joins Jury Duty, Cheltenham Festival hero Chosen Mate, Goulane Chosen, Mallards In Flight, Adamantly Chosen and Midnight Run on that roster of winners. The last-named gelding is significant.
Knockamullen Girl did not race and she is responsible for four foals, three runners, two winners and a placed horse. The other winner is Carefully Selected’s own-brother, the aforementioned Midnight Run (Well Chosen), a dual bumper winner who chased home Envoi Allen in a listed bumper at Navan, and was then successful over hurdles. He surely deserved a big race win and it came last year at Punchestown when he captured the Grade 2 Craddockstown Novice Chase.
There could be an omen with this family when you take a look at this weekend’s racing in Ireland. Knockamullen Girl’s only daughter is the unraced Knockamullenhonour (City Honours), and her first produce, also bred by Joe Lalor, is due to make his debut at Fairyhouse today, and the race is the Rich History and Well Chosen @ Kedrah House Stud Maiden Hurdle. The five-year-old is Shanroe Act (Vendangeur), and Sean Flanagan is in the saddle for owner Gary Ryan and trainer Karl Thornton.
This is a family that comes up with a couple of good horses in every generation. Knockamullen Girl is a half-sister to a pair of winners, one of which was the chase winner Russian Gale (Strong Gale). She has since proven to be a better producer than she was a racemare, and her best offspring was Lord Sam (Supreme Leader), a Grade 2 winner over fences in England, a Grade 3 chase winner at the Punchestown Festival, and he was placed in the Grade 1 Royal and SunAlliance Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham.
In addition, Lord Sam’s unraced half-sister Lady Sam (Topanoora) is the dam of Misty Lady (Oscar), and she was a Grade 2 hurdle winner at Listowel and twice successful in Grade 3 hurdle races at Gowran Park and Cork. .
Go back one more remove, and Carefully Selected’s third dam Hide Well (Will Somers), despite being the daughter of a sprinter, bred the Irish Cesarewitch winner Potato Merchant (Bluerullah), who also won a Grade 2 hurdle race at Navan, and the Slaney Hurdle (now a Grade 1) winner Stag Hill (Menelek). Hide Well is also grandam of the Galway Plate hero Stroll Home (Tale Quale) and the Grade 3 Cheltenham chase winner Can’t Buy Time (Supreme Leader).